according to your letter of the 29th ultimo, were expected to be finished in a couple of weeks from that time.
You explained to me the day before yesterday, in an interview on board your ship, the reasons for the delay.
Second. When those repairs are completed, the monitors, agreeably to arrangement between us, and in fulfillment of that part of the original programme to which they are supposed to be peculiarly adapted, are to enter the inner harbor, and I am to keep down with my batteries any fire, of whatever kind, from Sumter and from other sources, as much as possible, while the obstructions are being removed and passed. I have confidence in my ability to do this. I also believe the outer obstructions can be removed at night without drawing any fire from Sumter. My picket-boats pass around the fort frequently undiscovered.
Third. I have placed Morris and Folly Islands in such a condition of defense that they can be held by a small force, to enable to me spare from them enough men to take advantage of any success the iron-clads may achieve in the inner harbor.
This is as far army plans have been reported to the War Department. They are merely details of the original project, as the authorities at Washington will doubtless remember. With yourself I have discussed matters more in detail, but I respectfully suggest that these details ought not to be reported to Washington, unless special request is made for them by both War and Navy Departments. I have little confidence in the safety of important secrets at Washington.
It would doubtless be proper for you to state to the Navy Department whether or not you have confidence in my ability to execute my plans of future operations, and whether, in their execution, you will secure the measure of co-operation you desire and have a right to expect.
In my opinion, the Department ought to be satisfied with that. Do you not think so, too?
I have the honor to be, admiral, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Q. A. GILLMORE,
[P. S.] - I have just received your signal dispatch in reference to the use of my calcium light on the New Ironsides. I place it at your disposal with great pleasure, and have little doubt that it will aid you in keeping off the torpedo vessel.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,
Folly Island, S. C., October 17, 1863.
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
General-in-Chief, Washington, D. C.:
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that I am organizing a brigade of boat infantry, and deem it of the utmost importance, to secure their efficiency, that the men should be armed with the Spencer rifle.
Requisitions for 500 of these pieces have been made, but so much delay has occurred in obtaining any information on the subject or of the prospect of getting the guns at an early date, that I have taken